Alternative ensemble Electric Litany first began to take shape in 2007 after guitarist/vocalist Alexandros Miaris moved to London from Athens and chanced upon drummer Richard Simic. Once their line-up was completed by the addition of bassist Saul Blackeye and keyboardist Benjamin Price, the troupe threw themselves into the writing process. This led to their recording material for their debut album in just three days.
The fruits of their labour, Enduring Days You Will Overcome, features twelve very original offerings. The succinctly titled “Intro” is a mixture of tranquil instrumentation and vibrating vocals that serves as an ethereal opening. It transitions smoothly into “Silence”, which showcases a very unusual combination of electronically distorted choirs and more conventional vocals. Its music is made up of subtle percussion and insane synths amid the occasional riff. The result is an odd and not altogether harmonious piece that can be a little jarring at times.
“Hold Fast to Dreams” follows upon a steady beat and vocals that resound as they develop in the direction of some striking synths. It’s a lot more pleasant and melodic than its immediate predecessor, recalling the celestial nature of the introductory entry. “The Soul Remembers Everything” arrives afterwards via urgent and exotic guitars which become extremely foreboding, adopting a sinister edge ahead of another haunting harmony. Its sombre sound is quite stirring.
The reserved beginning of “Vanish” barely registers on the way to a high-pitched but hushed verse. Remaining reserved throughout, it seems spiritual and serene as it kisses the air lightly. “Name” opts for a quicker pace and busier instrumentation, along with an enthusiastic melody that constantly increases in momentum. Fast guitars and electronics make it quite exciting at times, before it culminates in a cutting display of otherworldly instrumental elements.
“Enduring Days You Will Overcome” comes as a long and lingering exhibition of unsettling musical motifs that forge an eerie and uncomfortable composition. “In the Morning” drifts towards an energetic electric beat next, while the synths heat up in the background. A distorted melody eventually sets in, leaving the whole thing feeling like a strange fusion of electro-pop, rock and opera. Pressing piano keys make a powerful impact later on ahead of a chilling finale.
“Feather of Ecstasy” is a rapid and riveting undertaking that bounds forward determinedly amongst arresting instrumentation and a reverberating refrain. “Empty Sea” succeeds it by bursting into a gripping bass line that races relentlessly through a sea of vigorous vocals, forceful guitars and purposeful percussion. It’s a rather exhilarating effort that’s probably the closest the record comes to the genre of mainstream rock.
“You Make Me Feel” is another bizarre and bracing undertaking that’s heavy on the synths. This is ahead of “Farewell (To Setting Flowers)”, whose accomplished piano work steals the show by shining through the rest of the instrumentation and vocals to bring the compilation to a touching and tranquil conclusion.
Electric Litany have certainly carved out an interesting little niche for themselves with their truly unique style. The material throughout Enduring Days You Will Overcome exhibits an extremely experimental and operatic sound. It’s quite a theatrical and post-modern piece of work, the onerous and peculiar nature of which makes for an intriguing listen.